Inland-directed base surge generated by the explosive interaction of pyroclastic flows and seawater at Soufrière Hills volcano, Montserrat

Geology
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Abstract

The largest and most intense lava-dome collapse during the eruption of Soufrière Hills volcano, Montserrat, 1995–2004, occurred 12–13 July 2003. The dome collapse involved around 200 × 106 m3 of material and was associated with a phenomenon previously unknown at this volcano. Large pyroclastic flows at the peak of the dome collapse interacted explosively with seawater at the mouth of the Tar River Valley and generated a hot, dry base surge that flowed 4 km inland and 300 m uphill. The surge was destructive to at least 25 m above the ground and it carbonized vegetation. The resulting two-layer deposits were as much as 0.9 m thick. Although the entire collapse lasted 18 h, the base surge greatly increased the land area affected by the dome collapse in a few minutes at the peak of the event, illustrating the complex nature of the interaction between pyroclastic flows and seawater.

Additional publication details

Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title Inland-directed base surge generated by the explosive interaction of pyroclastic flows and seawater at Soufrière Hills volcano, Montserrat
Series title Geology
DOI 10.1130/G21166.1
Volume 33
Issue 4
Year Published 2005
Language English
Publisher Geological Society of America
Description 4 p.
First page 245
Last page 248
Online Only (Y/N) N
Additional Online Files (Y/N) N